nep-cna New Economics Papers
on China
Issue of 2016‒07‒02
six papers chosen by
Zheng Fang
Ohio State University

  1. The Educational Success of China’s Young Generation of Rural-to-Urban Migrants By Pamela Lenton; Lu Yin
  2. Firm-level environmentally sensitive productivity and innovation in China By Fujii, Hidemichi; Cao, Jing; Managi, Shunsuke
  3. Does Export Product Quality Matter for CO2 Emissions? Evidence from China By Gozgor, Giray; Can, Muhlis
  4. Modelling the potential impacts of economic reform in a partnership between Australia and China By Paul Gretton
  5. The Effect of Pollution on Worker Productivity: Evidence from Call-Center Workers in China By Tom Chang; Joshua Graff Zivin; Tal Gross; Matthew Neidell
  6. Benefiting from Disaster?: Public and Private Responses to the Wenchuan Earthquake By Albert Park; Sangui Wang

  1. By: Pamela Lenton (Department of Economics, University of Sheffield); Lu Yin (Department of Economics, University of Sheffield)
    Abstract: The education policies introduced in the rural areas of China following the end of the ‘cultural revolution’ resulted in an improved provision of educational institutions along with better quality teachers which increased the educational attainment of young rural migrants and raised their career aspirations. This paper uses data from the Rural-Urban Migration in China (RUMiC) dataset for 2009, in a novel examination of the wage returns to schooling for young and old generations of rural-migrant and urban workers in order to ascertain whether the improved schooling has led to better outcomes. Another novel feature is the examination of the wage returns to over-, required and under-education. We find evidence that the wage return to schooling for young rural-to-urban migrants is larger than that for older migrant workers and that the return to schooling for young urban residents is lower than that of older workers. There is evidence of young migrants receiving a wage premium where they are overeducated for their job.
    Keywords: Human Capital; Rural-to-Urban Migration; Discrimination; Wage returns
    JEL: I26 J24 J71
    Date: 2016–06
  2. By: Fujii, Hidemichi; Cao, Jing; Managi, Shunsuke
    Abstract: This study analyzes productive efficiency in relation to CO2 emissions using a unique dataset of 562 Chinese manufacturing firms for the period from 2005 to 2009. We develop a directional distance function approach to identify technical innovators in the area of CO2 emissions. The results indicate that a large number of technical innovators are observed in the textile, paper, steel, and computer industries. Furthermore, there are clearly different trends in productivity change and corporate performance across industries and provinces. This result implies that policy makers need to consider industrial and regional characteristics to develop effective policies that conserve energy and reduce CO2 emissions.
    Keywords: Technical innovator; total factor productivity; technology adoption; CO2 emissions; Chinese manufacturing firm
    JEL: D24 O14 Q55
    Date: 2016–05
  3. By: Gozgor, Giray; Can, Muhlis
    Abstract: This paper re-estimates the environmental Kuznets curve over the period 1971–2010 in China. To this end, it uses the unit root tests with one structural break and the autoregressive-distributed lag (ARDL) estimations. The special role is given to the impacts of export product quality and energy consumption on CO2 emissions in the empirical models. The paper finds that the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis is valid in China. It also observes the positive effect from energy consumption to CO2 emissions. In addition, it finds that the export product quality is negatively associated with CO2 emissions. The paper also argues potential implications.
    Keywords: environmental Kuznets curve; energy consumption; export product quality; ARDL estimation; structural break
    JEL: C32 L15 O13 Q56
    Date: 2016–06–09
  4. By: Paul Gretton (EABER)
    Abstract: Effective economic reform agendas provide a means for promoting national economic growth, raising living standards and adapting to changes in trading conditions, new technologies and ways of working. Taking as a focus the Australia-China economic relationship, the GTAP model of the global economy is used to project the implications for Australia and China of preferential, unilateral and broader approaches to trade liberalisation, a broad agenda for reform across the services sector and financial market reform. The simulations show that reform strategies based on non-discriminatory trade liberalization and broadly-based concerted domestic reforms are likely to deliver substantive economic benefits and contribute to growth. Agendas that are restrictive, either through preferential deals between trading partners or through a narrow sectoral focus domestically are likely to constrain gains below levels that would otherwise be attainable.
    JEL: F1 F3 F4 O4 O5
    Date: 2016–06
  5. By: Tom Chang; Joshua Graff Zivin; Tal Gross; Matthew Neidell
    Abstract: We investigate the effect of pollution on worker productivity in the service sector by focusing on two call centers in China. Using precise measures of each worker’s daily output linked to daily measures of pollution and meteorology, we find that higher levels of air pollution decrease worker productivity by reducing the number of calls that workers complete each day. These results manifest themselves at commonly found levels of pollution in major cities throughout the developing and developed world, suggesting that these types of effects are likely to apply broadly. When decomposing these effects, we find that the decreases in productivity are explained by increases in time spent on breaks rather than the duration of phone calls. To our knowledge, this is the first study to demonstrate that the negative impacts of pollution on productivity extend beyond physically demanding tasks to indoor, white-collar work.
    JEL: J22 J24 Q51 Q53
    Date: 2016–06
  6. By: Albert Park (Division of Social Science, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology; Department of Economics, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology; Institute for Emerging Market Studies, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology); Sangui Wang (Department of Economics, Remin University)
    Abstract: We provide the first household survey-based evidence on the impact of the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake on the welfare of rural households. Asset and income losses were substantial, especially in seriously affected areas. Our main finding is that there was an overwhelming government response to the disaster. Subsidies provided to households in 2008 were so large that mean income per capita was 17.5% higher in 2008 than in 2007 and the poverty rate actually declined from 34% to 19%. Using distance from the epicenter as an instrument for earthquake damage, we find a strong positive statistical relationship between lost value of housing and other assets due to the earthquake and increases in income per capita and government transfers received, and much weaker responsiveness of private transfers, wage labor supply, and borrowing.
    Keywords: wenchuan earthquake, disaster, public response, private response, household survey, earthquake, housing, government transfers
    Date: 2016–06

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